JT Stokes, Staff Writer
The 22nd nationally ranked Bulldogs rolled over the Anderson Trojans in a 13-2 victory in game one of Sunday afternoon’s South Atlantic Conference baseball doubleheader at Anderson University, but the Trojans took game two in a 5-4 victory to claim the three-game SAC series. The Bulldogs are now 30-11 overall and 14-7 in the SAC.
Game One: Wingate 13, Anderson 2
Ty Andrus led off the game with a double, then scored on Mellett’s RBI double. Brown’s RBI single gave the ‘Dogs a 2-0 lead. A walk and Andrus single put two on for Mellett in the second, which gave Wingate a four-run lead with a two-run single backside.
Sophomore McCann Mellett had a huge game, going four-for-five with three doubles, five RBIs and two runs scored to push the Wingate offense. Juniors Tyler Schneider and Zach Little both added an RBI and scored two runs, while seniors Brett Branton and Ty Andrus combined for five hits and five runs scored. Senior Bradley Brown went a perfect three-for-three with a homer and three RBIs, while freshman Jed Bryant added a homer and two RBIs.
Bradley Brown connected on his 10th home run of the season on a two-run shot to give the Bulldogs a six-run lead in the sixth.
Wingate scored seven times in the seventh inning to go up by 13. A lead-off double from Branton and a Zach Little RBI single started the scoring for the Bulldogs. A Mellett two-run double and Schneider RBI double made it 11-0. Bryant hit a two-run homer to end the scoring giving Wingate a 13-run advantage.
Right-handed pitcher Austin Turgeon goes to 5-2 on the year with another win. He allowed only three hits and allowed only one run in seven innings, striking out three and walking three.
Game 2: Wingate 4, Anderson 5
William Thomas had a big day for the Anderson offense with a double and two RBIs in game two. Dillon Carpenter drove in a run for the Trojans, and Chandler Castleberry and Brandon Odachowski each added a hit and an RBI.
For the Bulldogs, junior catcher Micah Goodwin went two-for-three with a homer and two runs scored and Mellett was two-for-four with a double to lead the Bulldogs. Branton and senior outfielder Trent Wynn each added an RBI in game two.
Anderson scored five runs in the bottom of the second inning to push them past the Bulldogs. Three straight singles loaded the bases, with an Odachowski RBI single getting the Trojans on the board. Thomas tied it with a two-run double, while a Carpenter sacrifice fly and a Castleberry RBI single gave Anderson a 5-3 lead.
Christian Hendrix got the win, allowing two runs on four hits in 2 2/3 innings, moving to 2-1. Matthew Stanley worked 1 1/3 innings for his fourth save of the year, allowing a hit and striking out three. Junior right-hander Lane Wildman took the loss, falling to 2-2. He allowed two runs on three hits in two-thirds of an inning.
Leading the NCAA DII in wins, the Bulldog offense has looked very sharp this season, averaging 7.5 runs per game. The team has an on base percentage of .400 and a fielding percentage of .950.
With his 45th career home run, slugger Bradley Brown moved into 2nd place all-time in Wingate Baseball career home runs. He is the first Bulldog in school history with 10 or more homeruns in 4 straight seasons. He is also top 10 in SAC history in home runs, RBIs and walks.
The offense has also had a huge spark from junior outfielder Tanner Forry with 14 home runs on the season leading the SAC. Senior outfielder Ty Andrus leads the SAC in stolen bases with 19.
Wingate is back in action Wednesday, traveling to USC Aiken for a 6 p.m. start.
Edited by Brendan Shriver